Saturday, February 03, 2007


Tattvabodha - 17

Hari Aum

Prostrations to Guru. Prostrations to All.

Pancha kosaha ke?
What are the five sheaths?
Annamayaha pranamayaha manomayaha vignaanamayaha anandamayashchethi
The five sheaths are Food sheath, Vital Air sheath, Mental Sheath, Intellectual Sheath, and the Bliss Sheath.

Annamayaha Kaha?
What is Annamaya kosa?
Annarasaenaiva Bhoothva Annarasaenaiva vridhim Prapya Annaroopaprithivyaam yadhviliyathae Thadannamayaha kosaha sthoolashareeram
That which is born of food, that which grows by food, and goes back to earth, which is of the nature of food, is called the food sheath – the gross body.

After explaining about the three states of experience Shankara starts his explanation on the Pancha kosas or five sheaths. The five sheaths are Annamaya kosa (Food Sheath), Pranamaya Kosa (Vital Air Sheath), Manomaya kosa (Mind Sheath), Vijnaanamaya Kosa (Intellect Sheath) and Anandamaya Kosa (Bliss Sheath). These five sheaths seem to cover the Self because of ignorance of ones own nature of Self. Self or Atman cannot be covered, but it only seem to cover because of illusory ignorance. When the Self identifies itself with the various sheaths, the Self seem to be limited by these sheaths. The three bodies is divided among the five sheaths. Annamaya kosa refers to sthula shareeram. Pranamaya, manomaya and vijnaanamaya refers to sookshma shareeram which has 17 components(5 organs of perception, 5 organs of action, 5 vital air, mind and intellect). Anandamaya refers to the kaarana shareeram.

The first Sheath is the food sheath or Annamaya kosa. This sheath refers to the gross body. As Shankara mentioned while he was explaining Sthula Shareera or gross body, the gross body is subjected to six modifications starting from the birth to death. The food that the parents eat only is helping in the creation of this gross body. Once the body gets birth, the body sustains because of food only and after some point of time the body decays and dies. After death the body goes back to earth itself. Thus gross body is nothing but the modification of food from birth to death.

Prostrations to All.

Hari Aum


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